Total Recall

A Microsoft researcher is determined to record everything about his life. Everything

16 min read
Photo of Gordon Bell
Photo: Gordon Bell image: Mark Richards; Inset Images: Microsoft Research; Photo-Illustration: Mike Vella

At age 71, computer pioneer Gordon Bell is as active, combative, and restless as ever. The legendary creator of Digital Equipment Corp.’s seminal VAX line of minicomputers in the mid-1970s is now a sort of researcher-at-large for Microsoft Corp., working in a tiny San Francisco center devoted to research on databases large and small.

Like many of us, Bell occasionally forgets things. But unlike most of us, Bell has both a tinkerer’s heart and the wherewithal to launch a major software research project to make forgetfulness itself, like vinyl record collections and coffee-stained address books, yet another encumbrance remedied by the computer age.

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Video Friday: Turkey Sandwich

Your weekly selection of awesome robot videos

4 min read
A teleoperated humanoid robot torso stands in a kitchen assembling a turkey sandwich from ingredients on a tray

Video Friday is your weekly selection of awesome robotics videos, collected by your friends at IEEE Spectrum robotics. We also post a weekly calendar of upcoming robotics events for the next few months. Please send us your events for inclusion.

CoRL 2022: 14–18 December 2022, AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND

Enjoy today's videos!

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New AI Speeds Computer Graphics by Up to 5x

Neural rendering harnesses machine learning to paint pixels

5 min read
Four examples of Nvidia's Instant NeRF 2D-to-3D machine learning model placed side-by-side.

Nvidia Instant NeRF uses neural rendering to generate 3D visuals from 2D images.

NVIDIA

On 20 September, Nvidia’s Vice President of Applied Deep Learning, Bryan Cantanzaro, went to Twitter with a bold claim: In certain GPU-heavy games, like the classic first-person platformer Portal, seven out of eight pixels on the screen are generated by a new machine-learning algorithm. That’s enough, he said, to accelerate rendering by up to 5x.

This impressive feat is currently limited to a few dozen 3D games, but it’s a hint at the gains neural rendering will soon deliver. The technique will unlock new potential in everyday consumer electronics.

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Accelerate the Future of Innovation

Download these free whitepapers to learn more about emerging technologies like 5G, 6G, and quantum computing

1 min read
Keysight
Keysight

Looking for help with technical challenges related to emerging technologies like 5G, 6G, and quantum computing?

Download these three whitepapers to help inspire and accelerate your future innovations:

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